How much computer can you get at the bottom end of the market - comparison between the Commodore Amiga and the Atari 520ST.
Guests: Rick Geiger, Commodore; Tim Mott, Electronic Arts; Bryan Kerr, Atari; Jim Tittsler, Atari; Lewis Moore, Home Computing; George Morrow, Morrow Computing; Gary Kildall, Digital Research; Tim Bajarin, Creative Strategies
Products/Demos: Atari 800, Commodore 64, Amiga IBM PC Emulator, Commodore Amiga, Atari 520, STNEO Paint. Originally broadcast in December 1985. Copyright 1985 Stewart Cheifet Productions.
November 23, 2017 Subject:
A landmark episode
In hindsight they were right in questioning if those computers were in search of a market, especially in the USA as it probably needed more focus on business software (which the hardware and operating system could easily have handled). Marketing and media relations were also something the main competitors did better.
The demostrations seem a bit rushed, often cut off before a feature had been explained. It seems there were too many new features to be explained within the time they had.
Interestingly , they joke about the bouncing checker ball seeming to be like a benchmark of the year, like 3D mark is today.
It's a big contrast seeing the, for the time, advanced animation, graphics and sounds in comparison to the other computer demonstrations of 1985 which are mostly text only. The introduction of the 16 bit Atari and Amiga computers was probably when the over all computer experience as we see it today was born.
November 13, 2007 Subject:
Great documentary, long life to the Amiga
I owned an A500 back in Spain. In its heyday, the Amiga commanded a type of "cult following" that makes the Apple/Mac following insignificant. My A500 was so ahead of every other computer owned by my friends, specially in the sound and graphics department, that I had a sense of "being chosen by God" to own the Amiga. I think it's fair to say that during the late 80's, early 90's the Amiga was treated in several European as the "cool" alternative to the IBM PC. Pretty much as the Mac is treated today in the US but with the caveat that the Amiga was during that time so ahead of both the PC and the Mac that it made us, the Amiga owners, look down at ever other personal computer owner which didn't own an Amiga. The thinking was, how is that these guys are not as amazed as I am with the technical superiority of this machine?
I moved to the US 7 years ago and I discovered these archives of the Computer Chronicles just this weekend. It has been a great experience to watch all 5 programs that cover the Amiga in detail. I moved to the Wintel PC forced by the market in the mid nineties, but no matter how technologically advanced the PC and the Mac become, the Amiga has a place in my heart that will never be replaced by any other computer.
December 11, 2005 Subject:
I remember watching this when it originally aired...
At this time I was envious of anyone who owned an Amiga. It'd be years before the Amiga 500 would be released and allow us with limited funds to experience it's joys. Shame they killed such a great computer line. I'd advice anyone interested to seek out one of the several emulators available for both of these systems and try out of programs. The Amiga, especially, was way ahead of its time.
I have an old Amiga computer recorded somewhere. As soon as I can find it I'll upload it.
I'm not ashamed to admit that finding this web site has made me quite tearful. Firstly through a strange nostalgia for the days when getting a computer to do something as simple as load a picture in under an hour was actually astounding - something you'd tell people about for days, "You should have seen it do this!!".
Mostly though, I'm nostalgic for a life I didn't actually lead, one I was almost jealous of other people who were living it for me.
I grew up in the north east of England in the 1980's, a time when it wasn't good to be from a working class background in an old industrial town.
The new economy of computers and information technology was something that was happening in another world, right on the other side of America in a place called silicone valley.
As a boy I'd dream of a day when programs like Computer Chronicles were common place on British television so I could indulge in my love of computers, which in those days, particularly in my part of the world, were machines only huge companies could afford.
So, the next time I find myself writing a "moan-about-xxx" e-mail to this support department, or a "it's happened AGAIN!" thread to that help forum, I'll be sure to remind myself to watch the demonstration of Windows 3.0 on CC. If not simply to remind myself of how it used to be, but to reinforce a belief I've held since before I'd ever even seen a computer, never mind actually own one permanently connected to a world wide high speed computer network, that should I have been fortunate to live another life, I would most certainly have been an Apple child.
April 3, 2005 Subject:
tramiel vs. tramiel
the Amiga and the Atari both introduced a GUI and system architecture that allowed the system to move data faster without overloading their limited CPUs. Atari had the lower starting price, and ended up more popular in Europe.
The commentator felt it unlikely these systems would be able to compete for programmer support against the PC, Mac and Apple II.
This show is probably better if you had one of the two systems; I didn't, but wish I had.